I was never the type to keep odds and ends. I had no box of ticket stubs or polaroids, I had no stacks of old love letters. As I moved, to and from places, in and out of relationships, I left most of these things behind. My memory was good enough (and mean enough ) to handle the details.

But recently, as I look back over the seasons, I am starting to regret the little pieces of my life that I have discarded. I can see them: the program from a long forgotten football game, menus from long shuttered restaurants, the stack of photos from a cross country trip. In my mind's eye they are jumbled into a shoebox and stuffed into a closet. But they are gone, as surely gone as those days, those afternoons and the laughter that I smiled at when I opened the box and emptied the contents out on the floor. It was all there, now it's all in my head. Grayer and less clear everyday.

My typed words are my scrapbook now. This will be where I place my version of those memories, faded now as any old photo, smudged and curled on the edges. It's not what happened, really. It's only my version of what happened and how it felt. That is what stays with me, what stays with all of us.

for h.g.